A Corona pain management specialist accused of referring workers’ compensation patients to clinics he owned in order to pocket tens of thousands of dollars for tests and treatments must stand trial on felony charges, a judge ruled Tuesday.
Dr. Sanjoy Banerjee, 43, was arrested in May based on an investigation by the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office.
Following a preliminary hearing at the Riverside Hall of Justice, Superior Court Judge Mac Fisher found there was sufficient evidence to warrant a trial on two counts of insurance fraud and three counts of perjury.
Prosecutors argued for Banerjee’s license to practice medicine in California suspended pending the outcome of the case, but Fisher reserved his ruling until Aug. 27, the same day he scheduled a post-preliminary hearing arraignment.
The defendant is free on a $30,000 bond.
Between November 2014 and December 2016, Banerjee referred multiple patients who visited his office with workers’ comp-related injuries to a laboratory and surgery center in which he had proprietary interests, prosecutors allege. Patients were specifically sent to the Rochester Imperial Surgical Center in Wildomar for epidural injections, the D.A.’s office alleges.
As a result of the tests and treatments, the defendant billed health insurers $180,000, according to prosecutors.
Under state law, doctors are barred from self-referring patients to medical facilities they own.
“Dr. Banerjee reportedly signed at least five doctor’s reports declaring, under penalty of perjury, he had not referred patients to his own companies,” according to a D.A.’s office statement.
According to the California Medical Board, Banerjee has no record of disciplinary action on his license. He is an American Board of Anesthesiology-certified anesthesiologist and has been in practice for over a decade.
He has no documented prior misdemeanor or felony convictions in Riverside County.
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